2005 Cos d'Estournel, St-Estèphe (Previously $280.00)
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Made from an unusually high percentage of Cabernet Sauvignon (78%) and the balance mostly Merlot with a tiny dollop of Cabernet Franc, this superb effort requires plenty of time in the bottle. It boasts an inky/purple color as well as a glorious perfume of licorice, Asian spices, creme de cassis, blackberries, and toasty oak. This full-bodied St.-Estephe is exceptionally powerful, pure, and dense with a layered mid-palate that builds like a skyscraper. While there are massive tannins, they are remarkably velvety and well-integrated in this big, backstrapping effort that should enjoy an unusually long life. (RP)
Black in color, with aromas of orange peel, new leather, currant, berry and Christmas pudding. Full-bodied, with layers of velvety tannins and a long, long finish of fruit and spices. The cashmere texture is all there. 2003 plus 2000 equals 2005.
Loads and loads of roses and tobacco with red fruits on the nose. Full-bodied, with velvety tannins and juicy flavors of plum, currants, cherries, and raspberries. I am loving the texture, precision, and powerful all around. Give this a little time.
Saint-Estèphe has a reputation for tannins, and this 2005 Cos lives up to that. But it does much more, because the tannins add richness along with intensely ripe black fruits, dark plums and figs. The dense tannins are finely balanced with fresh acidity, and a long-lasting aftertaste. Impressive.
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Good ruby-red. Knockout nose combines currant, plum, minerals, licorice and graphite. Wonderfully sweet, rich and deep, but with near-perfect balancing acidity to frame the wine's lush fruit. This superb 2005 has it all. Finishes with noble, sweet tannins and palate-saturating persistence. On my most recent visit, Prats told me he considered 2005 to be superior to the 2003, and that the '05 may be 'our best wine ever.'
Wine & Spirits
Jean-Guillaume Prats allowed the vintage to steer Cos toward unprecedented power in 2005; the wine comes in at 13.95 percent alcohol, and it's grand in every sense. It smells like first-growth juice, with the kind of oak integration that accentuates the wine's beauty rather than masks it. You can feel the tart black cherry fruit and the black tannin along with a burn in the end that is distinct to this vintage. With several days of air, the tumble and rush of the structure settles and the fruit becomes all-powerful, a taut density of sweet purple plum. There's little doubt this will be an astonishing wine at 12 to 15 years of age; its ripeness leads into uncharted territory after that, which makes Cos one of the more interesting wines of the vintage to watch.